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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

The other attraction of Youtube, Litigations

ARS Technica has done a good article about YouTube and it's attractiveness to law suits. Google's vast fortune might also be a factor that make every fly trying to land on the pot!
Although Google has maintained that it is cooperating with everyone and following the DCMA safe harbor provision, that a web site operator cannot be held liable for infringing material posted by one of its users as long as it complies with removing copyrighted material upon request.
The article covers YouTube's legal problems from first suit filed against YouTube which came just before the Google acquisition, filed by the owner of the Los Angeles News Service, Robert Tur to next most prominent suit by Viacom.

"It looks likely that some kind of automated mechanism for identifying copyrighted materials will be adopted by many, if not all, of the major video sites," EFF staff attorney Fred von Lohmann told Ars.
Video sites have a strong incentive to make content providers happy in order to license content from them in the future, and YouTube is no exception. "The key issue will be implementing these tools in a way that leaves the door open for legitimate, transformative uses of copyrighted materials," von Lohmann said. "That's the ball that EFF has its eye on."

But this is the best part of Lohmann comment!

"A legal defeat for YouTube could result in fundamental changes to its business, potentially even making it commercially impossible to embrace user-generated content without first 'clearing' every video. In other words, a decisive victory for Viacom could potentially turn the Internet into TV, a place where nothing gets on the air until a cadre of lawyers signs off," he said. "More importantly, a victory for Viacom could potentially have enormous implications for Yahoo, eBay, Amazon, MySpace, and many other Internet companies, because they all rely on the same DMCA Safe Harbors to protect many facets of their businesses, as well. The stakes are high all around."


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